Review: The Bone Season (#1) by Samantha Shannon

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The year is 2059. Nineteen-year-old Paige Mahoney is working in the criminal underworld of Scion London, based at Seven Dials, employed by a man named Jaxon Hall. Her job: to scout for information by breaking into people’s minds. For Paige is a dreamwalker, a clairvoyant – and, in the world of Scion, she commits treason simply by breathing.
It is raining the day her life changes for ever. Attacked, drugged and kidnapped, Paige is transported to Oxford – a city kept secret for two hundred years, controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. Paige is assigned to Warden, a Rephaite with mysterious motives. He is her master. Her trainer. Her natural enemy. But if Paige wants to regain her freedom she must allow herself to be nurtured in this prison where she is meant to die.

I left The Bone Season with such mixed feelings about it. It took me a while to get through but I found the ending much more compelling and enjoyable. So even though it was a slow read, I would like to continue with the series in the future!

Paige was such a great female lead. She was headstrong and independent but not immune to her own personal struggles. Paige was definitely one of my favourite things about this book, and I really liked reading about her personal journey.

“There was no normal. There never had been.”

However, many other parts of this book let it down. Coming from a reader who enjoys a lot of YA and hasn’t read much fantasy until the past few years, I found this book incredibly daunting and somewhat annoyingly intricate. Shannon has created a very unique and impressive world by inventing so much, but unfortunately this included so many people and so much slang that it was confusing at the best of times. Hence, I definitely began to enjoy this read a lot further into the book as I finally understood more about what was going on. Luckily, there is a glossary to help put the pieces together!

I’ve seen a lot of reviews describing this book as dense, and I can definitely agree. The pacing is slow, but somewhat addictive, especially towards the end. Just expect to put some effort in if you do pick this up!

I can safely say the worldbuilding and all around confusing aspects were definitely the worst part for me. Despite it, there were many times I sat there thinking ‘god, this book is good’. I found myself so invested in those amazing, passionate action scenes.

“”Normal” and “natural” were the biggest lies we’d ever created.”

From what I understand, this book was Samantha Shannon’s debut. Going off that, I’m intrigued to see how much her writing has developed, and I’m super excited to read The Priory of the Orange Tree. If it wasn’t for the intense worldbuilding and issues surrounding the confusing aspects, I would definitely be giving this a much higher rating!

★★★★
3.5 out of 5 stars

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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